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BOOK / "THE STROKE OF THE SOUL." Diamela Eltit and Paz Errazuriz

BOOK / "THE STROKE OF THE SOUL." Diamela Eltit and Paz Errazuriz

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Essay / Photography

In the precordilleran town of Putaendo, in the Valparaíso region, lies the Philippe Pinel Psychiatric Hospital. Initially, the facility was intended to treat tuberculosis patients: the mountains, light, and sun favored pulmonary healing. A few years later, in 1968, it was reformulated and patients with chronic mental illnesses from various parts of Chile were transferred there. The patients were largely homeless, and many of them lacked civil identity when they entered. In the early 1990s, photographer Paz Errázuriz and writer Diamela Eltit arrived there with the intention of creating a book that would speak about love in extreme conditions of poverty, confinement, and abandonment.

As you go through these pages and witness the alliances formed by patients who have been given all sorts of medications to suppress their emotions, you become a witness to a different kind of love, one that is fleeting and mobile, a love that elevates these lives beyond mere survival.

25 years after its first edition, the synchronized yet highly free dialogue between photography and writing continues to astonish the reader. Paz Errázuriz and Diamela Eltit manage to capture what lies behind those hugs, kisses, laughter, and caresses: it is a certain poetic, sacred, and vital flow in those figures whose eyes look at us, pierce us, and reveal pupils whose horizons have been twisted.

Author: Diamela Eltit and Paz Errazuriz
Size: 26x19.5 cm.
Binding: Softcover
Genre: Essay
Weight: 320 grams
Language: Spanish
Publisher: Hueders
Year: 2022
Pages: 82

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